A CRUEL pet owner from Maltby who left his two dogs to starve to death in a crate in his kitchen has been disqualified from keeping animals for life.
The two boxer dogs - a two-year-old called Bruno and 18-month-old called Ruby - were found curled up together in the crate by police, with a bowl full of food just a few feet away.
Stephen New (34), of Seymour Road, Maltby, admitted causing unnecessary suffering to an animal when he appeared at Sheffield Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.
RSPCA inspector Vanessa Reid was called to New’s home on July 14 by police, who were concerned about the welfare of animals inside the property after seeing flies at the windows.
“I arrived to find police officers had already been granted access by the owner to find the dead bodies of two boxers in a crate in the kitchen,” she said.
“When I entered the house, I could immediately smell a strong aroma that I know to be the smell of rotting dead bodies.
“The house was quite dark with all blinds closed
“It had very little furniture inside. I had walked past several bags of dog food, some opened, some full and sealed, along with other dog items such as toys and leads.
“The kitchen was cluttered and grimy. On the side, there was a jar full of dog chews, a large bowl full of dog food, and a smaller bowl containing a small amount of food and some faeces. In the centre of the kitchen was a large training crate containing the remains of two dogs.
“They were laid together, tucked up beside a bowl which was on its side. I’m not sure whether it was a food or water bowl but it had been licked clean.
“There was a layer of thick faeces in and surrounding the cage.
“I tried to move the bodies, which had begun to decompose, and saw there were maggots present.”
New was sentenced to 12 weeks in prison suspended for two years and was ordered to pay £400 in costs.
He was also disqualified from keeping all animals for life.
The court heard that he had struggled to cope after the death of his girlfriend and shut everything out, including the dogs who he failed to care for during this time.
He fully accepted his responsibility for the dogs’ deaths.
Inspector Reid added: “These poor dogs were left to starve to death inside a cage - with jars full of dog treats and open bags of food just metres away.
“New was solely responsible for those dogs and allowed them to die slowly in front of him.
“But it was clear to me that he was also suffering himself. When I spoke to him, he was visibly emotional and said he was sorry.”
Vets believed the dogs had been left for up to five days with only a bowl of water and food and felt New had seen them getting weaker and thinner but still not taken take action.
They could not conduct a post-mortem due to the decomposition of the bodies but concluded that the dogs had died due to lack of food and water and would have suffered greatly.